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The Absolute Sound

  Welcome to The Abso!ute Sound online! We explore music and the reproduction of music in the home. We believe that the sound of music, unamplified, occurring in a real space is a philosophic absolute against which we may judge the performance of devices designed to reproduce music. Our goal is to provide the resources consumers need to judge how a component's sound either honors or departs from the music's truth, and to make sound purchasing decisions that maximize their experience of reproduced sound. Below is our Issue 154, June/July 2005 table of contents and editorial.

June / July 2005



8 - Letters

122 - Manufacturer Comments 



14 - From The Editor

16 - Industry News 

18 - Future TAS: New Products on the Horizon 

22 - Mainstream Multichannel: Epos ELS 5.1-Channel Speaker System and NAD T753 A/V Receiver
In this new column, Chris Martens explores affordable multichannel sound. 

34 - Show Report: Montreal’s Le Festival Son & Image 

38 - Car Fi: Mark Levinson/Lexus and B&O/Audi
Tom Martin and Alan Taffel hit the road with two sophisticated auto sound systems. 

54 - Cover Story
Classé Audio Delta Series Electronics
Modern features, classic sound, and great looks — Neil Gader reports on Classé’s latest. 

80 - TAS roundtable
The Future of High-Resolution Digital Audio
Where do SACD and DVD-Audio stand? What’s next after CD?
Ted Cohen of EMI Music, David Kawakami of Sony’s SACD Project, and Bob Stuart of Meridian Audio, share their insights. Robert Harley and Harry Pearson moderate. 


Equipment Reports

26 - Absolute Analog: SME Model 30/2 Turntable
Paul Seydor on SME’s tippy-top model. 

60 - Primare I21 Integrated Amplifier
A no-fuss, no-muss, no-brainer, says Jeff Dorgay. 

62 - Energy Veritas V2.3i Loudspeaker
Though it’s not ruler-flat, Neil Gader finds many virtues in Veritas. 

64 - Gradient Revolution Active Loudspeaker
Robert E. Greene on an unusual and effective design. 

68 - Cary Audio SLP-308 Linestage and Cinema 2 Amplifier
Wayne Garcia listens to Cary’s moderately priced separates. 

72 - ATC SCM 35 Loudspeaker
A pro audio firm goes domestic. Neil Gader reports. 

76 - Usher Audio Dancer CP-8571 II Loudspeaker
Chris Martens on an ambitious Taiwanese design; Robert Harley comments. 


The Cutting Edge

90 - Exotica: MBL 101 E Radialstrahler Omnidirectional Loudspeaker
Third time’s the charm, says a smitten Jonathan Valin. 

98 - Thiel SS2 SmartSub and SI 1 Integrator
Alan Taffel takes a long listen to Thiel’s innovative subwoofer and crossover. 

108 - HP’s Workshop
Musings on the state of the art, further thoughts on reference gear, an updated Super Components list, and a word on Classic’s 200-gram Quiex pressings. 


The Music

42 - Great and Great-Sounding Rock LPs, Part One
Bob Gendron and Wayne Garcia sift through their collections in search of the great-sounding rock records. 

133 - Recording of the Issue — Rózsa: 
Three Choral Suites (SACD) 

127 - Classical
Coverage of eleven discs and one essential LP set, including offerings from The Harp Consort, Christopher O’Riley, Anu Tali, and two classics on JVC XRCD. 

137 - Rock & Pop 
Reviews of 14 new CDs, including the latest from The National, Spoon, Mars Volta, Bloc Party, Moby, and Al Green, plus six fresh LPs tackled in our Hot Wax subsection. 

161 - Jazz
Six CDs, one SACD, and one LP reviewed, featuring titles from Frank Hewitt, Joe Lovano, Yo Miles!, Dave Holland, Joey DeFrancesco, and 
John Coltrane. 

168 - Bad LP Cover Art
At it again — Bob Gendron and Wayne Garcia on some truly awful rock album covers.



163 - Classifieds 

165 - Where To Buy The Absolute Sound 

167 - Ad Index


In The Next Issue

Wilson MAXX 2 loudspeaker

Budget tube gear from Antique Sound Lab and Turntables from Thorens and Rega

Getting the most from your iPod

Headphone survey... and More! 

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